Page 2189 - Week 07 - Thursday, 29 June 2023
Mainul Haque has been awarded an OAM for service to the multicultural community of Canberra. He has led the development of the multi-million-dollar Gungahlin Mosque project in 2017 and has served on a large number of boards and councils, including the Multicultural Advisory Council.
Nishi Puri, who is known to many of us, has been awarded an OAM for service to the Indian community of Canberra. Mrs Puri has worked with the Multicultural Association of Canberra, launched here in the Legislative Assembly back in February 2021, and with GOPIO, and the India Australia Association of Canberra previously. She has made a vast contribution, including serving meals to the homeless, blood donation camps, workshops for mental health issues, seniors and women, and advancing multiculturalism.
Dean Sahu Khan has been awarded an OAM for contributions to the community and to interfaith relations. Mr Sahu Khan is Vice-Chair of Religions for Peace Australia and Chair of the Canberra Interfaith Forum. He won the Bluestar International (Interfaith) Award in 2012, and the ACT government’s Volunteer of the Year award in 2016 for his work with the Fiji Australia Association of Canberra.
Dr Sunita Dhindsa has been honoured with an OAM for her exceptional service to the Indian community in the ACT, recognising her contributions in strengthening community ties, including as Inaugural Chair and Founding Member of the Council of Indian Federations of Australia, and President of the Federation of Indian Associations of ACT from 2019 to 2021.
Arun Venkatesha has been awarded an OAM for service to the Indian community of Canberra for a variety of roles, including Canberra India Council, Diwali Mela Inc, Australia India Business Council ACT Chapter, the India Australia Association of Canberra, and many more.
What is common among all of these people is their dedication to community and a level of service that is absolutely worthy of this recognition, and I warmly congratulate each of them.
MR CAIN (Ginninderra) (6.06): I would like to draw to the Assembly’s attention the front page of last Saturday’s Canberra Times. “Housing demand falls” was sprawled across the front page, along with quotes from the Chief Minister claiming that the Suburban Land Agency now have blocks for sale over the counter. Apparently, this is due to people not turning up to purchase their block on winning the land ballot, the odds of which draw ever closer to the odds of winning the lottery.
I want to contrast the Chief Minister’s observations with the resourcefulness and investigation of a Mr Kent Fitch of Nicholls, who investigated the Chief Minister’s claim and wrote the following as a letter in reply to that article. The letter is entitled, “Where is the land Andrew?”. He said:
Encouraged by Andrew Barr’s front-page comments, (“Housing Demand Falls”, June 24, page 1)—